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For researchers

We welcome research applications from all areas of women’s reproductive and gynaecological health across the life course. Our research saves and changes the lives of women, girls and babies.

We usually put out two different research calls each year, supporting both training grants and project grants. Training grants support the best and brightest early career researchers and underpin a researcher’s development as an independent future leader. Project grants support independent researchers leading their own work.

We’re a member of the Association of Medical Research Charities and are committed to supporting the best research and researchers. All grants are awarded on the recommendation of the Wellbeing of Women Research Advisory Committee (RAC) following a rigorous, independent peer review process.

Our strategy

We strive to improve the health of women, girls and babies by:

  • Supporting high-quality, good value, innovative research with realistic aims.
  • Closing gaps in scientific and medical knowledge.
  • Investing in promising new women’s health researchers.
  • Developing academic research, knowledge and techniques in women’s healthcare.
  • Futureproofing the charity by maintaining quality and transparency.
  • Promoting our research results and working with relevant organisations to do so.
  • Building a research portfolio which we can use to fund more research.

Download our research strategy

How our review process works

Our research is selected, monitored and evaluated by our eminent Research Advisory Committee (RAC), a team of established and expert clinicians and researchers.

Our rigorous selection procedure and independent peer review process guarantees we fund only the highest quality research to ensure that our funds are invested strategically to achieve the greatest impact on improving healthcare for women, girls and babies.

We are accredited by the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) and we work collaboratively with key partners including the government and the royal colleges; the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) and the Royal College of Physicians (RCP).


Download our guide to the application process

Download our assessment criteria and scoring guide

Download our funding success rates

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The Research Advisory Committee

The RAC is made up of an independent panel of specialists in women’s health who serve fixed terms to ensure fresh opinions and up-to-date expertise.

Decisions are based not only on each project’s scientific value, but also on the quality of applicants and what research will have the greatest impact on women’s health.

Independent chair

Professor David Williams

Professor of Obstetric Medicine, University College London

Researchers and clinicians

Professor Mohamed Abdel-Fattah

Clinical Chair in Gynaecology, University of Aberdeen

Professor Pierre Martin-Hirsch

Consultant Gynaecological Oncologist, Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Professor Ahmed Ahmed

Professor of Gynaecological Oncology, University of Oxford

Professor Linda McGowan

Leadership Chair-Applied Health Research, University of Leeds

Professor Dilly Anumba

Chair of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Sheffield

Dr David McLernon

Senior Research Fellow in Medical Statistics, University of Aberdeen

Professor Katie Morris

Professor of Obstetrics and Maternal Fetal Medicine, University of Birmingham

Dr Kirstie Coxon

Associate Professor (Research) Midwifery, Kingston University London

Professor Julia Sanders

Professor of Clinical Nursing and Midwifery, Cardiff University

Professor Pauline Slade

Professor in Clinical Psychology, University of Liverpool

Professor Dharani Hapangama

Professor of Gynaecology, University of Liverpool

Professor Rachel Tribe

Professor of Maternal and Perinatal Sciences, King’s College London

Dr Stamatina Iliodromiti

Reader in Women’s Health and Reproductive Medicine at Queen Mary University of London

Professor Raheela Khan

Professor of Cellular Physiology, University of Nottingham

Professor Krina Zondervan

Professor of Reproductive and Genomic Epidemiology, University of Oxford

Dr Sarah Martin

Reader in Cancer Cell Biology, Queen Mary University of London

Professor Hilary Critchley

Professor of Reproductive Medicine, University of Edinburgh

Midwifery Subcommittee

We are also supported by our Midwifery Subcommittee – three expert members in the field of midwifery research who sit on behalf of Wellbeing of Women and the Royal College of Midwives.

Dr Annette Briley

Consultant Midwife and Clinical Trials Manager, King’s College London

Professor Jayne Marshall

Foundation Professor of Midwifery, University of Leicester

Professor Vanora Hundley

Professor of Midwifery and Deputy Dean for Research and Professional Practice, University of Bournemouth

Our peer reviewers

We would like to take a moment to recognise the support and dedication of our amazing peer reviewers, women’s health experts in specific fields from around the globe who play a vital role in our review process.

Without the insight, expertise and hard work that they contribute to reviewing, it would be impossible to do what we do and continue to fund high-quality research to benefit the lives of babies, girls and women.

Download our full list of peer reviewers

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Our core programme of research

Our funding opportunities and how to apply

Open

Entry Level Scholarships

Enable graduates to develop research interests in women’s reproductive and gynaecological health

Open

WoW-BSSVD Entry Level Scholarships

Enable healthcare professionals to develop interests in research to improve outcomes for women with vulval conditions

Open

WoW-BGCS Entry Level Scholarships

Enable healthcare professionals and scientists to develop interests in research to improve outcomes for women with gynaecological cancers

Open

WoW-BMFMS Entry Level Scholarships

Enable obstetricians and other professional involved in pregnancy care to develop interests in research to improve maternal and fetal health and the improvement pregnancy care

Open

WoW-RCM Entry Level Scholarships

Enable midwives to develop research interests in midwifery, maternity services or with a focus on women’s reproductive health

Open

NIHR-WoW Doctoral Fellowships

Provide the opportunity to undertake exciting and impactful research that will underpin a researcher’s development as an independent future leader. The Doctoral Fellowship funds researchers to undertake a PhD

Open

Research Training Fellowships

Provide a foundation in research training for medical graduates, midwives, nurses and allied health professionals (AHPs)

Open

WoW-RCP Postdoctoral Research Fellowships

Support early career physician researchers to gather data and strengthen their bids for longer-term substantive funding

Open

WoW-BGCS Postdoctoral Research Fellowships

Support early career health professionals and scientists in the field of gynaecological oncology to gather data and strengthen their bids for longer-term substantive funding

Open

WoW-RCM Postdoctoral Research Fellowships

Support early career midwife researchers to gather data and strengthen their bids for longer-term substantive funding

Open

Sir Victor & Lady Blank Postdoctoral Research Fellowships

Support early career researchers to gather data and strengthen their bids for longer-term substantive funding

Open

Research Project Grants

Support independent researchers leading their own work

Open

WoW-PRUK Research Project Grants

Support independent researchers leading their own work in the field of pharmacy and women’s reproductive and gynaecological health

Open

Wellbeing of Women-Scottish Government Research Project Grants: Endometriosis Research

Support independent researchers leading their own work in Scotland.

Our current research

The following grants are being carried out by our researchers both in the UK and internationally.

Download our Research in Progress 2022

For grant holders

Information for researchers who have been awarded a Wellbeing of Women grant.

Further information coming soon.

Policies

Use of animals in research

Wellbeing of Women is a member of the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC). We support the principle of using animals in research when it is necessary to advance understanding of health and disease and to develop new treatments. This research only takes place where there is no alternative available. All AMRC member charities support this principle, as outlined in this AMRC statement on the use of animals in research.

Research in universities

Wellbeing of Women also supports the AMRC statement on supporting research in universities.

Conflicts of interest

Download our conflicts of interest policy

Cross-funder statement on COVID-19 in future grant applications

The Academy of Medical Sciences has co-ordinated a cross-funder statement with funder signatories on COVID-19 institutional memory: how we as funders will look to fairly remember and recognise the impacts of COVID-19 on grant applicants' work in the future. 

“...Any disruptions to research activities due to the COVID-19 pandemic will be taken into consideration by our panels and committees when assessing an individual applicant’s record of outputs, research achievements, and career progression in future grant rounds. We understand that most researchers will have been affected during this period of disruption. We also recognise that some of these impacts are likely to be felt long after the acute phase of the pandemic, potentially affecting applications for months or years to come...”
Excerpt from the statement

Read and download the full statement here.

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Our partnerships

We are proud to work in collaboration with the following esteemed partners.

We are a NIHR non-commercial partner

Wellbeing of Women is a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) non-commercial Partner.

This means the studies that we fund may be eligible to access the NIHR Study Support Service which is provided by the NIHR Clinical Research Network. The NIHR Clinical Research Network can now support health and social care research taking place in non-NHS settings, such as studies running in care homes or hospices, or public health research taking place in schools and other community settings.

Read the full policy: Eligibility Criteria for NIHR Clinical Research Network Support.

In partnership with your local R&D office, we encourage you to involve your local NIHR Clinical Research Network team in discussions as early as possible when planning your study. This will enable you to fully benefit from the support available through the NIHR Study Support Service. To find out more, please visit: www.nihr.ac.uk/study-support-service

If your study involves NHS sites in England you will need to apply for Health Research Authority Approval. For guidance on submitting an application please visit:  www.hra.nhs.uk.

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